When this probe was launched, the PIs were confident that the results would be fairly easy to extract, in fact the algorythms which were to be used in the analysis were already written - this is really necessary if the resulting science is to provide objective evidence of GR. Constantly processing data that did not live up to expectations until victory can be claimed is questionable science.Now that the gyro polhode behavior is well understood, we have been able to shift our focus to identifying and addressing some subtle systematic sources of noise and interference that are buried in the data, along with the relativity signals. Identifying and removing as many of these subtle systematic effects as possible is critically important for reducing the margin of error in our final results—especially the frame-dragging result. While we have been making steady progress in these efforts, it has proven to be a slow and painstaking process, and it is now apparent that several more months of data analysis will be required to achieve the lowest possible margin of error.
This makes the Gravity B probe data analysis just as suspect, and almost as late as WMAP.we ask NASA to create a contingency plan, and budget for an extension of the data analysis phase for several months past our scheduled results announcement at the American Physical Society (APS) meeting on 14-17 April 2007 in Jacksonville, FL. To this end, following a meeting with NASA in mid January, NASA has requested a proposal for extending the GP-B data analysis phase through December 2007, and this is in progress.
No. I am. You have failed to meet your own criteria for success: You failed to characterize the properties of the Gravity B probe gyroscopes before the mission well enough that they did not have to be recalibrated in-flight.In late fall, 2007, playing the role of our own harshest critic, our science team will perform a careful and thorough final review of the analysis and results, checking and cross-checking each aspect to ensure the soundness of our procedures and the validity of our outcomes.
There has been considerable technical merit in this quest - a great science project, and I will be interesting in reading about the proper motion of the quasars involved in the calibration process (after the PI embargo is lifted), but as a validating test of GR, this effort is a failure - Just like Pioneer 6.